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MICHAEL CHAPMAN - Americana (2000) & Americana 2 (2002)
Michael Chapman is a singer-songwriter and guitarist. Chapman originally began singing and playing jazz in the folk clubs of the 1960s, and eventually recorded over 30 albums.
Chapman has long had a fascination, not just with American music, but the American South and West. So an album explicitly inspired by the country should come as no surprise. The joy is how much it highlights his fabulous guitar picking. "Sweet Little Friend From Georgia" and "Coming of the Roads" might seem relatively straightforward, but the more epic "Swamp" and "Gaddo's Lake" delve into decidedly complex territory; in fact, the impressionistic "Swamp" is probably the record's centerpiece. As an instrumental portrait of the southern states it's loving, very finely honed, and played in a way that reminds you that Chapman is one of the best, and most undervalued, guitarists around. Even if "Jumping Geordie" has its origins on the other side of the Atlantic, it still fits in. For longtime fans, "Indian Annie's Kitchen" brings back some memories of "Kodak Ghosts," and throughout small touchstones of blues, country, and jazz slip by. A comparison to Ry Cooder -- most especially some of his soundtrack work -- might not be too amiss, except that Chapman is looking in from the outside, and is, possibly, a more gifted player. - allmusic.com
Americana (2000): 01. A Stranger's Map Of Texas 02. Sweet Little Friend From Georgia 03. Ponchatoulah 04. Jumping Geordie 05. Swamp 06. The Coming Of The Roads 07. Caddo Lake 08. Indian Annie's Kitchen 09. Rattlesnake 10. Be Natural 11. Anything But The Blues
Americana 2 (2002): 01. La Madrugada 02. Breakfast In California 03. Silverking 04. Blues For The Mother Road 05. When Dottie Goes Dancing 06. Apache Creek 07. Looking For Charlie In Nogales 08. White House 09. Ghosts In The Sycamores 10. Dust Devils 11. Thunderbird Lodge 12. So Many Echoes
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